Wednesday 23 November 2022

A Soothing Walk

At the end of my previous post, I mentioned that I went for a walk on Sunday (Nov. 19). My Mum and my sister were going to spend the afternoon together, so there was no urgent need for me to be there.

The rainy morning did not deter me; I took my little brolly with the fox print, a gift from my sister some years ago when we were in Ripon together and spotted it in a shop. Twice during that day I actually needed my umbrella, each time only for a few minutes until the shower had passed.

I took the local train to Marbach, which takes just over 10 minutes, and started my walk at the station at 12:05, leaving the town on the route my Mum and I used to walk so often when my parents still had their allotment near Steinheim.

It was windy, and the clouds were hurrying in the direction I was walking, with blue bits of sky and sunshine in their wake, so I was certain I would not encounter many more (if any) showers.

My Mum and I always liked that stone wall and the orchards in this part of the walk:

Coming out at the top end of that hill:
First view of Steinheim, where I was going:
Coming up to the first houses, what was that near one of the trees?
A black-brown fluffy cat, not at all interested in me but in the rustling of small animals in the grass:
Crossing the bridge over the river Murr to enter the small town properly; the river was not showing signs of the dry summer months anymore:

Steinheim has many such corners:

Now leaving the town, a long uphill stretch lay before me, lined with vineyards, some of them abandoned, others still working:
I reached the enclosure where my parents' allotment was. Today, not one single car was parked behind the locked gate. The weather was not gardener-friendly, and I would not have gone in anyway, even if the gate had been open.
The sun had bravely been trying to pierce through the clouds, and finally worked its magic over the land, lighting up Lehrhof, a tiny hamlet seen from the lane leading past the allotments:
The white building was where I wanted to go next. It is a place for seminars, deliberately far out so that the  there can completely focus.

Meanwhile, some other people had figured it was "safe" to go out and not get too wet:
The empty flag poles near the seminar building were lit up by the sun:
On I went...
The woods in the background were my next goal.
Silver birches:

But first, I needed to eat; breakfast was long gone, and it was nearing 2:00 pm. I perched on the driest part of a bench to eat my sandwich and chocolate bar and drink some water, with this view:
It was windy there and I did not want to stop for long, and soon made my way into the woods:

I have always felt at home in woodland, and this path was particularly beautiful. The woods here have a different character to the Black Forest, gentler and more leafy; each with their own beauty.

The path dipped into a valley, leaving the woods behind:

It then went uphill again and along the ridge opposite to where I had been walking before; if you know where to look, you can see the spot where I stopped for my late lunch:
Wide open skies always have a positive effect on me:
I walked through Steinheim again and left the small town at the same spot where I had entered it. The cat was still there, although now in a different orchard:
Nearing Marbach, this is a spot my Mum and I always stopped for breath after the first uphill bit:
A familiar view for me and my Mum:

I reached Marbach station with about 20 minutes to spare. Sitting on a bench was welcome after the 20 km or so of walking in about 3 1/2 hours I had walked. It was not yet sunset when I arrived home; I was a little tired but felt very calm after that soothing walk, and spent a quiet evening, talking to O.K. on the phone later and watching another episode of All Creatures Great and Small.


  1. Great sights on your walk. Love how the sun came out a bit in the end and lit up those autumn colored trees!

    Mersad Donko Photography

    1. The walk would have done me good even if the sun had not come out, but it made it extra special.

  2. I really enjoyed your walk vicariously. You made me think quite a bit about the walks I used to do. I rarely go for walks more than 3 or so miles these days because almost all my walks are in the woods in the Castle Grounds in Stornoway. When I was in my late teens I walked for miles and miles alone. Later I walked everywhere with friends (but only ones who didn't want to talk constantly). I love walking in deciduous forests but I am completely unable (or was years ago when I last tried) to walk in coniferous forests without a feeling of complete dread and fear. Thanks for making me think again about walking more.

    1. I remember you mentioning your aversion to coniferous forests. The Black Forest is of course of a much more coniferous character, but even in its "blackest" parts I never feel dread or fear, and in recent years, visible efforts have been made to interrupt the unhealthy monoculture of firs.
      The walk I took on Sunday gave me plenty to see and a chance to think, but also NOT to think, if that makes sense; and simply to enjoy the pleasure of putting one foot in front of the other. You should have seen my shoes afterwards!

  3. I want to walk more but often find excuses not to these days - with chillier weather and some volunteer work I have started. I don't walk outside often during the winter as I fear falling. So it is nice to see your beautiful views of places I will never get to see in person. I must take advantage of the warmer days when I can before the snow and ice arrive!
    It is Thanksgiving here tomorrow and I am thankful for you, Meike! :)

    1. Cold and especially wet weather makes me want to walk less, too, but generally I have no problem motivating myself to go out there and get walking - rather the opposite; I rather postpone what I should be doing indoors.

      Ellen, that was one of the nicest things someone has said to me in a while! Thank you, and Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. For years now I've followed you on your walks and enjoyed being with you. I still worry about you being out and about alone in the woods ... maybe too much TV on my part! ... but I think you are a special person for doing it, unafraid!

    1. Walking in those woods is really nothing that requures courage, Jill. There is no wildlife such as bears, wolves or cougars in these parts, and scary people are definitely more often to be found in the city (for instance around the train station at night) than in the woods, so far from anywhere they could buy alcohol or other drugs. I often come across other lone walkers, men and women, so you really don't need to worry about me being out and about alone, dear Jill :-)

    2. Thank you, that is comforting to me!

  5. Such a long walk! I am afraid if I had gotten to sit on that bench I would have never gotten up! You must be so very fit. The photos are just gorgeous and like you, I love wide, open skies. I think I remember that when you visited your parents at the allotment, your mother would have her homemade cakes waiting for you. If I am right, let her know that I appreciate her cakes and cookies even though I've never had one! Ha ha! But I do know her knitted socks!😊

    1. So very fit? I don‘t know about that, Kay - it‘s only walking, on easy paths, and does not require much fitness. I was ready for that little break to eat my sandwich and sit on the bench for a few minutes, and later, waiting on a bench at the train station was also a welcome chance to sit down. But I can walk long enough to thoroughly enjoy it without overly tiring out.
      Yes, my Mum would often have my Dad get coffee and her home-made cake ready for us, and sometimes we would buy salted pretzels in Steinheim on our way to the allotment. Happy days they were.

  6. A dramatic walk in changeable weather. Good to "walk out" some of your deepest thoughts - including memories of your late father and Steve.

    1. It really was soothing, which is why I chose that headline for the post. I had no appointments or pressing tasks to return to that day; my only limit was the early sunset as there are of course no lights along the lanes on the fields and the paths in the woods. All I "had" to do was walk.

  7. I loved accompanying you on your walk, but it made me laugh out loud that you finished your day with an episode of All Creatures Great and Small. It is a favorite here, as well.

    1. Thanks for coming along, Debby!
      I have finished watching the two seasons of All Creatures that I have on DVD, but I hear a third season is to come out early next year.